Jump to content
Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!
CHA-LEE

CHA-LEE's Tale

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

I would also recommend seeing an optometrist - I had the same problem about 2 years ago (44/45) for me caused by the normal age issues (Presbyopia). I also tried the off the shelf lenses in .5, .75 and 1.0 magnifications and it helped with focus on the front sight but it ended up causing other issues especially with distant targets. Long time used also caused headaches and my vision would be "screwed up" for short periods of time after using them. I have good distance vision (20/15) and when using the magnifiers targets beyond 30 feet were blurry. "Readers" work fine for me for reading, but not so well for shooting.

I  eventually broke down and went to lens crafters and told the optometrist I needed a dedicated set of glasses for shooting that allowed me to focus on the front sight (6-8 inches past my finger tips) but still needed to be able to have distance vision on targets. She was able to work up a prescription for me that would do that and I ordered a set of Oakley shooting glasses with that custom prescription. They are dedicated shooting glasses for me and I am still using them today (2 years later) and my prescription has not changed. I'll be at the CO state match in a month if you want to take a look at / through them. 

 

Edited by warpcorps

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I might add a couple of things to consider and why match performance may not be the same as practice.  Assuming you haven’t developed any near-sightedness, a +1.00 by itself will still be focused at 1 meter from your eye which isn’t even to the  front sight of your gun.  The reason why you are seeing the front or  rear sight in focus is because your eye is accommodating (focusing).  In this case it is over-focusing.  If you can’t get the front sight  in focus with a +1.25 it is because your eye focusing muscle won’t relax.  Some of this is automatic..  you know at a certain distance your eye needs to focus at certain amount.  The problem is it doesn’t relax now that you have put a +1 in front of it.  The thing that complicated this is that at 43, your focusing system is struggling to keep up all day if you have do any significant focusing at near.  Basically the focusing system tends to “spasm” when it gets tired which results in the eye not completely relaxing nor will it completely focus as much as it would first thing in the morning when it is fresh.  I would at the minimum recommend to do all of your testing early in the morning, especially don’t sit in front of a computer several hours and then do your experimenting.  You may not get the same results because your eye muscle is fatigued even if you can’t appreciate symptoms.  If you love Limited, you can make it work in the future, but it will require a lot of effort which may not be worth it...only you can decide that one.  Unfortunately another strike against you is your lack of strong eye dominance (which is why you have to squint to call your shots).  By you making the targets blurry with the +.75, it is easier to make your brain pay attention to the front sight and see what you need to see. I hope you will at least try .75 left eye and +1 right eye early in the morning and see how it works especially with the FO blacked out on top.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On Saturday I ran the HPPS match which as always is a lot of work getting everything ready to rumble the morning of the match. This was our section qualifier match that is used in a series of matches to determine Nationals Slot allocation for the 2020 shooting season. Since this was our section qualifier we setup 7 stages plus a full Chrono stage.

 

The night before I only got about 3 hours of sleep because I had to drop my wife off at the airport the morning of the match. Getting up super early to drop her off then driving straight to the range to setup and run the HPPS match ultimately ended up being my undoing. By the time the match started I was struggling to stay focused due to being physically worn out and mentally tired. Since I was there I was also shooting the match and made a complete bone head mistake that caused me to DQ.

 

My squad was on our third stage of the match and I was ROing all the way up until my turn. It was my turn so I handed off the clock and proceeded to walk the stage one time before shooting it. I get into the start position for my dry fire run of the stage, set my body and feet to exit the starting position and I am really focused on exiting aggressively, then as I exit I subconsciously gripped the gun and drew it out of the holster…….DOH!!!! I immediately realized that I screwed up bigtime and declared that I had DQed myself. The whole squad was surprised that I had done it including myself.

 

This is what I get for trying to shoot a match when I am running on fumes. Since I had DQed and couldn’t shoot anymore I became the full time RO for the squad for the rest of the match. It sucked to DQ myself over doing something so dumb like that. But if I was so mentally out to lunch to allow something like that to happen I shouldn’t have been shooting in the first place. This is something that I need to pay much more attention to in the future. If I am feeling as worn out and mentally foggy as I was before the start of the match then I need to respect that I shouldn’t be shooting. Hard lessons area always learned the hard way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On Sunday I attended the Weld County USPSA match. With some much needed rest the night before I was feeling back to normal and looked forward to shooting this match. I decided to use my new Atlas Titan Operator Backup gun for this match so I could get some more rounds through it. The backup gun ran like a champ with zero issues. When the buzzer goes off I can’t even tell it’s not my primary as it feels the same and the sights track exactly the same as my primary. The higher angled thumb safety paddle is the only thing I can “Feel” being different during the draw and even that isn’t a huge difference. It’s cool to have a backup gun that is truly identical to my primary. Not to mention it running 100% reliable with zero drama.

 

The morning of this match turned out to be overcast with a little bit of misty rain. This was abnormal given the forecast called for clear skies and hot temps. But it was a great opportunity to give the +1.00 shooting glasses a try. The lighting wasn’t horrible due to the overcast but it was dark enough to start causing problems. My squad started on a large field course that had lateral movement between positions. It was setup in a somewhat memory stage configuration as you could see the same targets from multiple positions. I was able to shoot this stage twice to make a comparison between shooting glasses. For my “Match” stage run I used the +1.00 glasses and for the practice run after that I used my normal +0.75 glasses. On the first run with the +1.00 glasses I could see the rear notch with perfect clarity and the front sight was slightly blurry. The targets were much more blurry than normal. All of this was expected as it matched what I was seeing in dry fire at home. While shooting the stage I found myself pointing the muzzle high a few times while “Looking for” and trying to focus on the front sight since it wasn’t in focus. Some of my hits on target were displaced abnormally high due to pointing the gun high while trying to see the front sight and shooting at the same time. On my second run with the +0.75 glasses I could see the front sight pretty good and my sight picture was normal which resulted in much better on target hits with about the same stage time. These results confirmed that the lighting wasn’t really bad enough to justify using the +1.00 shooting glasses. But it was a good opportunity to give them a try. For the rest of the match I stuck with my +0.75 shooting glasses and it worked well even though the lighting wasn’t optimal until our third stage. By then the sun was out and I could see my sights well.

 

Performance wise, I shot the match ok. I had a few minor mistakes on a couple of the field course stages. This match had about 30 pieces of steel and I had way too many make up shots on some of those. Same old issue of blasting at white instead of picking a specific spot to aim at within the steel. The classifier stage was brutal for me though. It was called Short Sprint standards where you had one shot on each target freestyle from the back shooting box, then one shot each strong hand from the middle box. Then one shot each freestyle from the middle box then one shot each weak hand from the front box. The targets were at distances and angles that made the one handed shooting pretty difficult. I ended up pulling one of the strong hand shots low into a no shoot, then pulled another weak hand shot just low touching the no shoot perforation. Eating a miss and two no shoots on that classifier hurt and kept me out of contention for winning the match overall. These kind of stages are also super easy for the PCC shooters which made shooting against them in the overall even more difficult.

 

It was a fun match and I was glad to get some more run time on the Backup Atlas gun as well as testing out the +1.00 shooting glasses. I am planning on going out to the BLGC range one day this week after work for some live fire practice and stay until sunset to see if I can replicate the crappy lighting conditions so I can test out the +1.00 glasses some more. We will see how it goes.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is a "memory stage"? My next 3 Gun competition will have two of them but I've never heard of this before. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, blammo81 said:

What is a "memory stage"? My next 3 Gun competition will have two of them but I've never heard of this before. 

 

 

A memory stage is a scenario where you can see the same targets from multiple shooting positions. Usually a bunch of visual barriers (Walls, barrels, no shoots, etc) are used to make the target presentation confusing. This can end up in a situation where you double or triple engage the same targets accidentally from multiple different positions. Or you don't engage a target at all because you didn't see it from the only position it was available from. These types of stages are usually called "Memory Stages" because the best way to tackle them is to memorize a very specific target engagement order while also getting into very specific shooting positions.

 

Memory stages are not the normal situation where you run to a shooting position and shoot everything you can see from that position, then run to the next position and repeat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yesterday after work I was able to do some Live Fire practice in poor lighting conditions. I purposefully went to the range later in the evening when it was almost sunset so I could test out my new Decot Revel +1.0 Diopter shooting glasses. Having these +1.0 shooting glasses made with my pupal distance prescription eliminated all of the “Vertigo” feeling I was getting with the cheap +1.0 safety glasses. When I got to the range and started shooting the lighting was still good so that gave me a chance to warm up on some drills with my old +0.75 shooting glasses. I kept shooting the drills with the old glasses until the lighting got dark enough to make it difficult to see the sights. Then I switched to the new +1.0 shooting glasses and kept on shooting as the lighting got darker and darker. I kept shooting until the lighting got to a point of being unreasonably dark compared to what would happen at an outdoor match.

 

When the lighting is just dark enough to make the +0.75 glasses start to be ineffective the +1.0 glasses are a little too focused on the rear blade. This puts the front sight in a slightly blurry condition and it caused me to subconsciously point the muzzle high as I try to find and focus on the front sight. This was the same situation that I experienced when I used the cheap +1.0 glasses at the Weld match on Sunday when the lighting was only marginally poor. But as the lighting got darker the +1.0 glasses started working better and better. They allow me to see a pretty crisp rear notch with a fairly clear fiber dot in the front sight which is very close to what I replicated in dry fire at my house. The only bummer with the +1.0 shooting glasses is how blurry the targets are at distance. As part of my practice stage I had three mini poppers at about 20 yards and those things were mega blurry in those lighting conditions. It makes aiming at a specific spot on the target really difficult. All I can do is aim at the center of the blur and hope that is centered enough. The good news is that even though the target is blurry I could still see a valid sight alignment using the rear notch and fiber dot so I could call shots properly based on sight alignment.

 

Much more testing in poor lighting conditions is needed with these new +1.0 shooting glasses. But I like how it’s going so far as it does seem to be a viable solution. I will be attending an indoor match this coming Sunday and that will give me another chance to use these shooting glasses in poor lighting conditions. I think the hardest part with this testing is really going to be figuring out when to transition from my +0.75 glasses to the +1.0 ones. I need to do some dry fire testing in the marginal lighting conditions to see what I can reasonably replicate at the range to “Test” the sight seeing effectiveness given the lighting conditions. This may be as simple as quickly raising & lowering the gun for a flash sight picture and assessing what I could actually see then deciding on a particular lens that enables me to see the flash sight picture the best. This could easily be performed in the safe area at a match or even during the make ready process.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This past weekend I presented a 2 Day Competition Pistol Group class at the Weld County range. There have been several local shooters asking if I could present a class “Up North” on the Colorado Front Range and this was my attempt to do that. My hopes were high in filling the class to full capacity but by the time the weekend came around we ended up with only 4 students. Usually my class size minimum is 6 students but I figured that I would let this one happen since it was a local class and I didn’t have much in travel expenses. The only bummer was needing to drive 100 miles one way from my house to the range each day. Either way the class went well and with only 4 students each person got more one on one time. I also used this class as an opportunity to get some more run time on my new backup Atlas Titian Operator. That blaster has been running like a champ and with about 1K down the pipe it’s good to go as a proven reliable backup gun.

 

Since I am a glutton for punishment I signed up for the Outlaw indoor pistol match at the Trigger Time Gun Club on Sunday night. After teaching all day on Saturday and Sunday I was tired, but this indoor match was a great opportunity to test out my new +1.0 Shooting glasses. The lighting inside this range is pretty poor, especially if the stage isn’t setup near any of the down range lights. This makes seeing iron sights super challenging. The new +1.0 Shooting glasses worked much better than the +0.75 glasses in the challenging lighting conditions. It was still difficult to see my sights clearly, but I could see enough of the rear notch and the fiber dot in the front sight to call my shots. The good thing is that I could see enough of a sight picture to continue to shoot aggressively and call my shots effectively. The few make up shots that I had in the match were needed as the marginal called shots resulted in marginal hits. Would a red dot have been much better in these poor lighting conditions? Absolutely!!! But the +1.0 shooting glasses allow me to at least some semblance of sights in these lighting conditions. I am really looking forward to taking advantage of these new shooting glasses outdoors when the lighting isn’t optimal to see how they work out there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Utah State match was this past weekend in Salt Lake City. The weather was pretty warm the whole weekend hovering in the upper 90’s and low 100’s. Thankfully there was very little humidity which made it hot but not miserable. This match had 14 stages plus a chrono which is bigger than most Level 2 matches. More Pew Pews is always more fun right? We shot 8 stages plus chrono on Saturday and the remaining 5 stages on Sunday. With a bunch of shooting to get done they decided to start the match promptly at 7am each morning which meant that the sun was just above the mountains creating some pretty sucky lighting conditions.

 

I figured these lighting conditions would be a good test for my new +1.0 shooting glasses but they didn’t work out as good as I had hoped. The lighting was just good enough to make the +1.0 glasses too much magnification and I could see was the rear blade in clear focus with a really blurry front sight. Shooting the morning stages with a super clear rear blade and blurry front sight was painful on many levels. I couldn’t call my shots well and couldn’t even see hits in the targets due to the targets being too blurry. I either shot way too slow to ensure hits or I shot more aggressively and was bleeding points in crappy hits. On the first stage of the second day I racked up a miss on one target and a no shoot on another in the same array which was less than 5 yards away. To add insult to injury, I couldn’t even call the shots bad because I couldn’t see the sights to call them. I wasn’t even shooting crazy aggressive either. Pointing the gun in the general direction of targets and hoping that you get hits because you can’t see worth a crap is a super frustrating situation to be in. I can accept getting beat by other shooters because they are better than me. But it’s getting really frustrating when I can’t even compete at the level I know I can perform because I am getting beat by my eyes right out of the gate. I don’t want to get beat by my eyes anymore.

 

Even though I was struggling to see my sights in the mornings I had fun otherwise. I was on a great squad and we all had fun while working hard through the stages. I was squaded with Kenny Terry, Bob Krogh and Leo Deleon and we were all shooting Limited. The was also Elias Frangoulis and Gianni Giordano shooting Limited so the competition was pretty solid at this match which was awesome. It’s actually been quite a while since I have attended a Level 2 match with so many talented shooters in Limited. I tried my best to battle through the stages the best I could but I came up short of my expectations finishing 5th in Limited at 95% of winner Kenny Terry. I really wanted to give Kenny and Bob a run for their money at this match but it wasn’t meant to be. What we want and what we end up with are not always the same thing. Especially when I am hobbled by my vision issues during the crappy lighting conditions.

 

 

The continual broken record of battling vision issues in crappy lighting conditions has pretty much solidified my expectations of performing less than desired for the rest of the majors this year. I am going to do my best to embrace the suck and try to find some kind of solution. But the reality is that I am going to have to accept the fact that my iron sight shooting days are numbered. Switching to Open is going to happen sooner or later and when that happens really comes down to exhausting all of my options in Limited to help see the sights better. Right now I believe that I have exhausted all of the “reasonable” options from a magnified shooting glasses perspective. There might be some other crazy stuff out there that I haven’t tried, but I have tried a LOT of different configurations and where I am at with prescription shooting glasses is what I believe to be the best option. The only area left that I have to revisit is trying a little bigger sight setup. Right now my Limited guns have a 0.090 wide front sight and a 0.100 wide rear notch. This fairly small and tight sight setup allowed me to get away with putting a blurry fiber dot on what I was aiming at in poor lighting conditions and it was usually aligned enough to generate good hits if the fiber was fully contained in the narrow notch. I think that my eyes have degraded enough to make this “small” sight setup simply too small.

 

Since I want to try some “Bigger” sight configurations I knocked out the sights on my backup Atlas Titan and replaced them with a 0.100 front and 0.140 rear notch setup to test out in practice. With the 0.100 wide front sight it is much easier to make out the top “iron” corners of the front sight versus primarily using the fiber dot. The 0.140 rear notch is also 0.140 deep which makes the 0.100 front sight swim in a huge rear notch. The rear notch in this config is too wide and deep as I lose the ability to accurately reference the top of the blade when shooting aggressively. I can see the front sight well in this scenario but with a poor rear blade reference it’s just too sloppy. I had these sights laying around from prior sight testing phases so it was nice to give it a try again to see if it worked better. I ordered a 0.125 wide rear notch sight and that will be my next setup to test. This will bring the rear notch width back to a more conventional offset compared to the 0.100 wide front sight. I should get that rear sight sometime early next week so hopefully I can get that tested out before the Colorado State match. In the mean time I will have to rock my old sight setup on the Primary gun for the High Desert Classic this coming weekend in Albuquerque. I don’t have much runway to test this stuff out before the Nationals. Hopefully I can figure out a sight setup that works better than what I am currently using in the marginal lighting conditions.  

Edited by CHA-LEE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This morning I was able to do another round of live fire testing with a different iron sight setup. This time I was using a .100 wide front with a .125 Wide by .100 Deep rear sight. This rear sight is actually the original .100 x .100 rear notch sight on my backup Atlas Titan that I filed to make the notch .125 wide. I figured that filing on the old rear sight was worth the risk since that narrow notch wasn’t working well for me anymore anyway. Out with the old, in with the new right?

 

This new setup looks very similar to my old .090 front .100 rear configuration. The only differences are the sights being slightly bigger looking and a little more light bar gap. When I punch the gun out then immediately dismount the gun for a flash sight picture it’s much easier to see and focus on the top corners of the front sight and assess its alignment to the rear notch. I didn’t have the same issue of not being able to associate the top of the rear blade compared to the front sight when using the .140 wide rear notch. I think this is a combination of it being narrower and the depth of the notch is also shallower.

 

After sighting it in I did some group shooting at varied distances to double check the accuracy. All was looking good so I switched to doing rapid fire drills at the same 10 – 25 yard array with targets at five yard increments. With this practice session being in the morning the sun was behind the targets putting them all in a pretty heavy “Shadow Target” scenario which is exactly what I wanted to test with these different sight setups. I shot these targets in several different types of drills along with mixing in some movement and reloads to get that practice in as well. I also shot my primary Atlas Titian with the old sight setup on it to compare in the exact same scenarios. The .100/.125 sight setup allowed me to shoot sooner and call my shots with a much higher degree of accuracy. Being able to see the top corners of the iron in the front sight with this setup regardless of shooting speed is a game changer for me. I can accurately call close C zone, and D zone hits with it which I really can’t with the old setup. When shooting the old setup I would be able to call C’s and D’s but they were well into those scoring zones in order to be called there.

 

Being able to call my shots with precision again was super refreshing, especially on these “Shadow Targets” which usually give me trouble. I am not going to say that this .100 x .125 sight setup is the best or last configuration I am going to try. But it is at least a step in the right direction. The main thing I really like about this setup is that it doesn’t look abnormal when shooting so I don’t have to relearn how the sight picture should look at varied distances or targets. The bummer is that I only have this sight configuration ready for my backup gun. My primary still has the old sight setup on it until I get some more sights delivered next week. This means that I will be going to the High Desert Classic in Albuquerque this weekend with a mixture of sight setups. I will shoot my backup gun at this match since it has the new sight setup on it and we will see how it goes through the match. If it turns into a fantastic failure I can always switch back to my Primary to finish the match. I am keeping my fingers crossed that this new sight setup will be a step in the right direction. I hate rolling the dice like that at a major match, but I don’t have any time left to do more testing.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If there's a function test range in Albuquerque, you're welcome to take some rounds thru my pistol. I have a .100 front and a .115 rear. The .125 rear gave me trouble on the further out tuxedo targets, I had a hard time telling the wide notch from the hard cover.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This past weekend I attended the High Desert Classic match in Albuquerque New Mexico. I was able to shoot the weekend schedule this time which was nice. The last couple of years I was forced to shoot the Thursday/Friday schedule due to work or travel conflicts. The weather was great for the whole match which was also nice.

 

I used my backup Atlas Titan for this match as it had the new .100/.125 sight setup on it. For a change, the lighting during this match was pretty good the whole time. So I wasn’t able to test the bigger sight setup in less than optimal lighting conditions, but that is fine as I would rather have good lighting anyway. The new sight setup worked well and I could see the top corners of the front sight easily the whole time which made calling my shots much easier. This bigger sight picture did look slightly different which kept me from shooting in a subconscious level the whole time. But I was able to shoot most of the target arrays in a subconscious sight processing/shot calling method. The only thing that is going to fix that is more time behind the gun. The good news is that I didn’t feel like I couldn’t see my sights good enough any time during the match. Even on the shadow targets during the morning stages.

 

I didn’t have any major train wrecks or issues during this match. But I did have small issues on just about every stage. The issues were all over the place as well which is also strange. For example, I missed my draw on a stage, had a fail to fire due to a high primer, flubbed a couple of reloads, screwed up the foot work on a couple of stages, was way over aiming on several of the partial targets, missing on steel and then I strained my right knee at the end of the first day.

 

I am really not sure how I strained my right knee but it happened on the last stage on the first day when I was running hard between shooting positions. This was a Patellar tendon pain just below the knee cap where it attaches to the shin bone. I have had this pain in the past when I was doing too much jumping during agility training. But this was at least 2-3 times more painful. This right knee pain made it super uncomfortable to crouch in a normal shooting position or break hard while entering shooting positions. Luckily we only had 2 stages left to shoot on Sunday. But unluckily these two stages had the most full throttle extended running needed between positions. I did my best to power through the pain while shooting the stages but it hurt pretty bad. That and my right leg buckled a few times when entering shooting positions. This buckling actually made me over shoot the final shooting position on stage 3 where I had to retreat to get back into the shooting box.

 

The stages were challenging and fun and my squad mates were great. But this was a really odd scenario for me where my vision was fine but everything else seemed to be having minor issues. I was able to produce ok stage runs overall but none of them were what I would consider SOLID. This showed in the results as I wasn’t able to win any of the stages. This match had some good heat in Limited division with Glenn Shelby, Chris Culpepper, Gianni Giordano and myself. When the results were final I ended up 3rd in Limited at 98.8% of the winner Chris Culpepper. First to Third was separated by about 15 match points which is a tight race for the win. I could play the “What If?” game endlessly taking away a bunch of my minor mistakes that would have made up that 15 point difference. But it is what it is.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been doing my best to take it easy on my right knee and icing it every night. The Colorado State Match is this coming weekend. I am shooting the whole match on Friday then ROing it over the weekend. I hope that my knee will be healed up enough to get the job done. There isn’t much else I can do for it than I am already doing so all I can do is wait and see how it turns out.

 

When I got home from the High Desert Classic match my bigger Dawson sights had been delivered. I replaced the front sight on my Primary Atlas Titan and filed the rear notch wider to match the Secondary blaster. Now my Primary Atlas Titan has the .100/.125 sight setup on it as well. I was able to get both guns sighted in at the indoor range today. I checked the POA/POI at 5, 10, and 25 yards while getting both guns dialed in. Horizontally they are both now dead nuts on. I was surprised that my Secondary gun needed some windage tweaking because I thought I had it dialed in before but it was right about 4 inches at 25 yards. The Secondary has a perfect POA/POI at 10 yards and the Primary is about half an inch high at the same distance. I might have to get a slightly taller front sight on the Primary to bring the POI back down at 10 Yards. But I also want to double check this sight in outdoors where the lighting is much better. Indoor group shooting isn’t very reliable for me.

 

I am not going to be able to get any range time between now and the Colorado State match so I am going to roll with what I have. My plan is to shoot my Primary Atlas Titian for this match and hope that my knee doesn’t explode during the match.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, CHA-LEE said:

This past weekend I attended the High Desert Classic match in Albuquerque New Mexico. I was able to shoot the weekend schedule this time which was nice. The last couple of years I was forced to shoot the Thursday/Friday schedule due to work or travel conflicts. The weather was great for the whole match which was also nice.

 

I used my backup Atlas Titan for this match as it had the new .100/.125 sight setup on it. For a change, the lighting during this match was pretty good the whole time. So I wasn’t able to test the bigger sight setup in less than optimal lighting conditions, but that is fine as I would rather have good lighting anyway. The new sight setup worked well and I could see the top corners of the front sight easily the whole time which made calling my shots much easier. This bigger sight picture did look slightly different which kept me from shooting in a subconscious level the whole time. But I was able to shoot most of the target arrays in a subconscious sight processing/shot calling method. The only thing that is going to fix that is more time behind the gun. The good news is that I didn’t feel like I couldn’t see my sights good enough any time during the match. Even on the shadow targets during the morning stages.

 

I didn’t have any major train wrecks or issues during this match. But I did have small issues on just about every stage. The issues were all over the place as well which is also strange. For example, I missed my draw on a stage, had a fail to fire due to a high primer, flubbed a couple of reloads, screwed up the foot work on a couple of stages, was way over aiming on several of the partial targets, missing on steel and then I strained my right knee at the end of the first day.

 

I am really not sure how I strained my right knee but it happened on the last stage on the first day when I was running hard between shooting positions. This was a Patellar tendon pain just below the knee cap where it attaches to the shin bone. I have had this pain in the past when I was doing too much jumping during agility training. But this was at least 2-3 times more painful. This right knee pain made it super uncomfortable to crouch in a normal shooting position or break hard while entering shooting positions. Luckily we only had 2 stages left to shoot on Sunday. But unluckily these two stages had the most full throttle extended running needed between positions. I did my best to power through the pain while shooting the stages but it hurt pretty bad. That and my right leg buckled a few times when entering shooting positions. This buckling actually made me over shoot the final shooting position on stage 3 where I had to retreat to get back into the shooting box.

 

The stages were challenging and fun and my squad mates were great. But this was a really odd scenario for me where my vision was fine but everything else seemed to be having minor issues. I was able to produce ok stage runs overall but none of them were what I would consider SOLID. This showed in the results as I wasn’t able to win any of the stages. This match had some good heat in Limited division with Glenn Shelby, Chris Culpepper, Gianni Giordano and myself. When the results were final I ended up 3rd in Limited at 98.8% of the winner Chris Culpepper. First to Third was separated by about 15 match points which is a tight race for the win. I could play the “What If?” game endlessly taking away a bunch of my minor mistakes that would have made up that 15 point difference. But it is what it is.

 

 

Wow,

What a circus stage match!

Some shooters like them but I never did.

Good luck with your knee problem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This past weekend I attended the Colorado State Champs hosted in Byers Colorado. I was scheduled to shoot the whole match on Friday then RO a stage over the weekend. I did my best to baby my right knee through the week leading up to the match and hoped that it would be healed enough to get me through the match. But my knee wasn’t up to the task. On Friday I got through five stages before I had to call it quits. I was in pain the whole time and that was super distracting during my stage runs. The pain is really bad any time I crouch or squat which unfortunately is pretty much the whole time I am shooting a stage. I can walk around in a normal upright stance without much pain which is good. But crouching with a slight bent knee stance is brutal. The last stage I shot had a wobbly bridge that you had to jump up on and shoot from a couple of different positions. The knee pain while on that wobbly bridge is what ultimately did me in.

 

After that I knew my shooting that day was done and took off my gear then put my shooting stuff back in the car. I didn’t want to be “That Guy” and leave my squad because I couldn’t shoot anymore. So I ROed my squad through the rest of the match. I am glad that I could still help out with ROing that day so I wouldn’t be a total loser.

 

It absolutely sucked to quit half way through a match due to an injury. My match performance up to that point wasn’t very solid due to being in pain and worrying about my knee giving out completely in the middle of the stage run. I also didn’t want to completely blow my knee out by grinding through the rest of the match then be totally screwed for the Nationals. After assessing the whole situation it was fairly easy for me to call it quits which will allow me more healing time before the nationals. I just hope that my right knee will get healed up enough between now and the nationals.

 

I did my best to keep from injuring my knee more through the rest of the weekend while ROing. It didn’t hurt bad as I could stand and walk around without crouching most of the time which was good. But being on my feet all day at the range for three days straight didn’t do it any favors. We will see how it goes over the next week. I hope that it can heal up before the nationals. If not I am going to embrace the suck and hobble through the stages as good as I can. No tapping out of the Nationals!!!

 

The good from this weekend is that I was able to swap the front sight on my Primary Atlas Titan to get the vertical POI to match my Secondary blaster. Now they are both dead on at 10 yards and about an inch high at 20 yards. I was also able to shoot the stage I ROed for fun several times to get some more run time on the new sight setup. My stage didn’t have much movement on it so it was perfect for my wounded knee situation. It also had a really good mixture of Easy, Medium and Hard shots. This new sight setup is working a lot better than my old setup, especially on the “Shadow” targets. Being able to see the top corners of the front sight again is awesome. Since I was testing both of my blasters it also gave me a chance to really see how they compared back to back. Doing this back to back blaster testing also identified a slight difference in the trigger pull on my Primary. The trigger pull on the Primary has a slightly heavier sear push through wall than the Secondary. This slightly heavier sear push through weight was causing me to anticipate the shot and push the gun down slightly on the difficult shots. I was able to get the trigger reworked on the Primary to match the secondary and now they both feel identical.

 

I won’t have any time to do live fire practice between now and the nationals. I have to fly to Seattle for work tomorrow and won’t get back until Friday. Then I drive to the Nationals on Saturday. I am ROing the Open/PCC match at the Nationals then Shooting the Limited match. I am going to bring a bunch of extra ammo out there and try to shoot on the function fire bays each day before the start of the Limited match. Hopefully that will give me enough run time on the new sights to make it feel more normal. I also hope that my right knee will be healed up to not cause me the same issues as it did this past weekend. My fingers are crossed and I am going to give it my best.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good luck with the knee!  I've been fighting degenerative disc in my lower back.  I literally feel your pain!  Hopefully you can get the rest you need to heal properly before nationals.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice job at Nats Charlie! Very impressive considering your struggles with health and vision. Well done !

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The 2019 USPSA High Cap Nationals is now in the books. The Open/PCC match was run on the first three days then the Limited/Carry Optics match was run on the final three days. I volunteered to RO the Open/PCC match and was put on Stage 20. Working the match was a lot of work but it was cool to watch the shooters tackle stage 20. Stage 20 had a diagonal shooting area with a bunch of open targets that could be engaged between wall gaps from static positions or on the move. The interesting thing about this was that most of these targets that could be engaged on the move were at a humbling distance of 15 – 19 yards. Engaging these targets on the move would produce the best stage time but you also had to shoot at an aggressive pace to make it worth it. There were an astounding amount of deltas and mikes on these “Shoot them on the move” targets. Even the Super Squad shooters were struggling to get their hits on those targets while shooting on the move. Working the match was a lot of work but it was nice to give back by volunteering my time to help out.

 

Since I was still nursing a wounded right knee I did my best to not hurt it more while working the match. This worked out pretty good as there were only a couple of times when I crouched too much to cause excessive pain. Every night I rested my right knee and iced it for at least an hour. I kept my fingers crossed the whole time that it would be healed up enough to not be a significant issue during the Limited match when I was shooting. Lucky for me, the rest and healing before the Limited match was enough to get me through. It was painful to crouch, squat and kneel but most of the time the pain wasn’t mega bad. I told myself up front that I was going to give it my all regardless of the pain and hoped that my knee wouldn’t blow out completely during the process. Through the match the most difficult positions for my knee were the two really low ports that required you to kneel on it. On Day 1 of the Limited match I was SUPER lucky that my squad had stage 20 as our last stage of the day. Stage 20 had one of these low ports that you had to run into and slam down into a kneeling position. When I shot the stage I slammed down into the position with my right knee and the pain was really bad. I finished the stage then struggled to get back up. My right leg was spasming due to the pain and I had to hand off my gun to the RO so I could use both of my hands and only my left leg to get back up. The mega pain in the right knee subsided after about 30 minutes which was good and I gave it two separate icing sessions that night. Surprisingly the next morning my right knee was back to the same pain level it was at the start of Day 1. I thought for sure it was going to be worse due to the last stage knee slam the day before but it wasn’t. Day 2 had another low kneeling port but this one had you getting into the position much more gently. It hurt to kneel on it but the pain was nothing near what happened the day before. Even though I tried my best to keep my bum knee from running hard and crouching deep in positions I still found myself wimping out here or there through the match. Especially when it came to doing repeated dry fire runs of stages or positions.

 

My other battle for the match was the ebb and flow of trying to shoot aggressively with the new sight setup. I didn’t want to shoot too slow with the new sight setup because the sight picture didn’t look “normal” compared to my old setup. I was pushing the envelope of shooting aggression while still trying to call my shots effectively and had marginal results. Way too many Delta hits that I thought I called Charlies. I also had three mystery Mikes that I called Deltas while shooting and was leaving the positions but they ended up being Mikes. The ultra confusing thing about this is that I also had several marginal or bad called shots that were exactly what I called them and I was able to subconsciously make them up with better hits. With about 2500 rounds on the new “bigger” sight setup before starting the Nationals its really not much of a surprise that I wasn’t able to call my shots solidly. I know from prior sight size swaps that it usually takes me about 10K – 15K of shooting with a new sight setup to get back to a solid subconscious shot calling mode. I simply didn’t have the time to get that much shooting done between the time of swapping them and attending the nationals. On the other side of the coin, I also know that with shooting the AM/PM/AM schedule for the nationals that my Old smaller sight setup would have failed me on the morning stages when the lighting wasn’t optimal. I would rather use a sight setup I can see but am not 100% burned into vs not being able to see anything. Sometimes you have to pick the best of two poor choices and this was one of those situations.     

 

Overall I felt that I had shot an “OK” match performance. I didn’t have any mega disasters or super rock star stage runs. I racked up 5 mikes and 1 no shoot total which was too much for sure, but I primarily associate that with incorrect shot calling using the new sights. I also know that I probably left about 10 seconds of combined stage time on the table due to my bum right knee. When the results were tallied I ended up 15th overall in Limited which is still a respectable finish given the depth of talent attending. I know that if I was tuned into the new sight setup and my knee wasn’t jacked up that earning a top 10 finish would have been totally possible. But it simply wasn’t meant to be this time around. Sometimes you have to roll with the punches and do the best you can.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congrats.. A very respectful results given the talent pool.. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With fall here and winter weather making outdoor activities a challenge this is usually the time when practical shooters start to perform more of their practice indoors at home. With that in mind I pulled together the below video to help people test and hone their movement and gun handling skills at home. The intent of this drill is to define a position to position movement distance, then figure out what the par time would be for that movement running as hard as you can without doing anything with your gun but establish a solid stance in the destination. In the example in the video this par time ended up being 1.6 seconds. Use this same par time as you integrate more gun handling activities. The goal is to maintain the same par time even though you are adding more gun handling tasks. If your time increases as you add more gun handling activities that is where you need to assess the footage and figure out where you are the extra time is coming from. I don't know how many hours of dry fire practice I have invested in these type of drills over the years but it has been a LOT and I continue to find value in doing them. Enjoy and Get to Work!!!

 

 

Edited by CHA-LEE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...